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Renovating to accommodate adult children

Did your little chicks come home to roost just when you thought your nest was empty? Or have they never flown away at all? If the answer to either question is yes, don’t worry, you are definitely not alone.

In May, New in Homes reported that 42% of Canadians in their twenties are living at home, compared to only 27% of young adults still lived at home in 1981. So, if you’ve been dreaming about turning Jr’s bedroom into a home gym, you may want to think again. Although that doesn’t mean you might not have a renovation project in your future.

Even though they’re still at home, your adult children are going to want more space of their own. There is also the issue of added privacy, different hours, and a desire to feel some sort of independence.

Create a main floor suite

If you have a dining room or formal living room that goes largely unused, why not convert that space into a bedroom suite, complete with a small sitting area, kitchenette, or even a full bath? You could even claim that space for yourself and give your grown-up fledgling the upstairs master. After all, if you plan to stay in your home well past retirement, you might appreciate not having to scale the stairs every day.

Combine bedrooms

Another way to create more space for an adult child is by combining two bedrooms to create a junior master suite. This would provide enough room for them to have some entertaining space and maybe a small home office.

Finish the Basement

Finishing the basement is the most traditional means of making room for adult children. Whether you choose to convert it into a self-contained basement apartment, or simply an elaborate in-law suite, you will find that this is the best way to ensure that everyone has their privacy. This is an especially good choice if your basement is a walkout. Giving your adult child their own entrance will prevent too much disruption from their comings and goings.

If this is your plan, there are several things you’ll want to consider in order to ensure that the space is comfortable and safe. The first step will be to hire a qualified contractor with extensive experience finishing basements. Remember, while everyone wants to save some money, it’s never worth risking the health and safety of your family to do so.


No matter which route you choose, you’re going to want to do as much as possible to ensure a pleasant cohabitation. For many families, this means soundproofing. Home offices and client calls, loud music, late hours, and other lifestyle differences can make it challenging for different adult generations to live under the same roof.

Prepare for Resale Impact

Anytime you plan a personalized renovation, such as turning a four-bedroom home into a three bedroom, or by adding a main floor suite, you always run the risk of negatively impacting your home’s resale value. If you think of your home first and foremost as a place to raise your family, then this might not deter your plans. However, if you consider your home to be an investment first, then your best move may be to leave the main and upper floors alone and stick to renovating the basement.

To find a basement renovation contractor near you, browse the local listings on

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